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Secretary's Biography

Mark Hammond, Secretary of State

Secretary Hammond

South Carolina Secretary of State Mark Hammond grew up in Spartanburg, where he graduated from Dorman High School. He received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from Newberry College in 1986 and went on to obtain a Masters in Education from Clemson University in 1988.

Secretary Hammond completed special basic training at the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy in 1991 and worked as a Criminal Investigator, aiding prosecutors for the 7th Circuit Solicitor’s Office, until 1996.

Mark Hammond served as Spartanburg County's Clerk of Court from 1997 to 2002. On November 5th, 2002, he was elected as South Carolina's 41st Secretary of State. Voters returned Secretary Hammond to office in 2006, 2010, 2014, and most recently in 2018.

Secretary Hammond is dedicated to efficiency, accountability, transparency and customer service. Some of his more notable successes as Secretary of State include: 

  • Initiating reforms targeting charity and telemarketing abuses, collecting more than $3.6 million in fines to date;
  • Requesting and implementing improvements to the South Carolina Solicitation of Charitable Funds Act to facilitate enforcement of the Act, assuring charitable donors more accountability and transparency from nonprofit organizations;
  • Offering online search capabilities for vacancies on state boards and commissions, notaries public, and Uniform Commercial Code filings;
  • Implementing the award-winning Business Entities Filing, Search and Document Retrieval System, increasing productivity, public accessibility, and customer service and support; 
  • Implementing the award-winning Uniform Commercial Code Filing, Search and Document Retrieval System, which provides faster filing and quick search results;
  • Seizing nearly $67 million in counterfeit merchandise, resulting in the arrest of nearly 650 people;
  • Revising the Notary Public statute and producing an online webinar by which citizens can learn the duties of South Carolina Notaries Public; and
  • Continuing the Annual Angels list of charities, and providing the percentage of receipts that go toward the charitable cause to educate the public on wise charitable giving.

Secretary Hammond is an ex-officio member of the South Carolina Consumer Affairs Commission and Legislative Council. He has served as the liaison to the Notary Public Administrators (NPA) section of the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS), where he also chaired, co-chaired or served on the International Relations Committee, the Standing Committee on Business Services, and the Company Formation Task Force. Secretary Hammond was named an Outstanding Alumnus by the South Carolina Shrine Bowl for Public Service in 2006; named a Henry Toll Fellow by the Council of State Governments; a recipient of the Sesquicentennial Medal of Honor Award - Outstanding Alumni by Newberry College in 2007; served as a trustee for Spartanburg Methodist College from 2009 - 2015; was honored with NASS’s Medallion Award in 2017 for his outstanding service and longtime leadership support; and in 2019 he was inducted into the South Atlantic Conference Hall of Fame as a Distinguished Alumnus (Newberry College).

On a personal note, Secretary Hammond and his wife Ginny have three children. The Hammonds are members of Westminster Presbyterian Church in Spartanburg.